What do weed, underage kids, and the police have in common? They will all take part in a series of undercover raids on legal shops once the sales of recreational cannabis start in October.
Canada might be in for a bit of trouble once the sales of recreational cannabis start, as there seems to be a lot of potential problems in the short run for this program.
There are implications that the program didn’t have enough time allotted for the development of the necessary infrastructure as well as the task forces which will be enforcing the law.
On top of everything, Canada will soon start sending underage customers into cannabis dispensaries to test staff compliance with the law.
Not enough cops trained to spot high drivers
Firstly, Canadian authorities haven’t managed to train the necessary number of police officers needed to spot high drivers, in fact, they trained only half of the recommended number.
The Canadian Association of Chiefs of Police, group which represents more than 90% of police agencies in Canada, warned the federal government that its members need more time to train the officers which will be performing the checks.
“Only 733 officers had completed the specialized training as of May, up from 665 in February. In March 2017, about 600 officers had the training”, said Natalie Wright, a spokeswoman for the chiefs of police. “In March 2017, about 600 officers had the training.”
The Association also said that they are highly unlikely to reach the initial goal of 2,000 officers trained to spot drug-impaired drivers when marijuana becomes legal later this year.
According to some estimates, at this rate of training, Canada will have 2000 specialized officers in around five years. Public Safety has pledged $161 million CAD in funding for police training.
A test for dispensaries
Even though the government might not have a store in every province as several provinces have decided earlier to allow only private-run stores, the one thing the government will keep doing is making sure that the dispensaries obey the law.
As many dispensaries are poised to pop up in different areas of the cities, the Police will soon have to start sending more people in order to inspect these places.
One of the ways new recreational dispensaries will be tested for obeying the law is by sending underaged kids to the store, to see if the retailers will sell cannabis to them without a valid ID.
One such trick will be implemented in Nova Scotia, British Columbia, Saskatchewan, and Newfoundland where the age limit for cannabis is 19 years of age.
Regulators plan on sending 18-year old kids to such stores, which will then attempt to purchase recreational marijuana with their false ID cards.
So far, only Nova Scotia has came out against this idea as they have a regulated cannabis market which will be government-run under the NSLC umbrella and their own programs to prevent wrongful sales.